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History

Enduring Strength, Stability and Growth

American National’s tradition of relationship banking dates back over a century to its founding in 1909. Started by H. O. Kerns to serve the community of Danville, Virginia, American National has grown from a single office on Main Street to a full-service bank with more than 25 branches in two states.

Key Dates and Milestones
February 15, 1909 The charter for “American National Bank of Danville” was issued.
February 17, 1909 American National opened to offer community banking services to the citizens of Danville. The new Bank had capital of $100,000, surplus of $25,000, and deposits of about $225,000. The location of the Bank was on the eastern corner of Main and Market Streets in quarters that had previously housed Union Exchange Bank. H.O. Kerns served as President until 1919.
1911 The Bank moved its operations to the Rialto Building on lower Main Street.
1914 Congress passed legislation to begin formation of the Federal Reserve System. The Board voted to join as soon as membership was available.
1915 The Bank moved to the western corner of Main and Union Streets in the Dudley Building, which it occupied until 1933.
1920 The deposits of the Bank had exceeded $1.6 million and Frank Talbott was elected President.
December 1921 The Board granted authority to Bank officers to establish a Trust Department.
May 12, 1927 The Trust Department was organized and began to offer trust services.
1925 William R. Fitzgerald was elected President and assets were at $3.4 million.
January 8, 1929 At the annual shareholders meeting, a resolution to change the name of the Bank to “American National Bank and Trust Company” was approved.
November 1929 Mr. Fitzgerald, at the November meeting, stated, “The Bank has passed through a strenuous period during the past ten days due to the crash in the stock market.” The Board minutes of this meeting reflect the support of the officers’ loan decisions during the period stating, “…under the circumstances, the actions of the officers granting them was justified.”
1933 The Bank purchased the building on the corner of the Main and Market Streets, formerly occupied by the Commercial Bank, which closed in 1930 as a result of the depression.
1935 As Danville was struggling out of the Depression, Wayles R. Harrison, then cashier and later President of American National, initiated what was first called “the character loan”—today’s installment loan. When Harrison introduced this new loan, it was greeted with skepticism by others in the banking community. Traditionally, bankers desired a guaranteed form of collateral.
1933-1938 The Bank more than doubled assets to cover $4.6 million.
1942 Wayles R. Harrison was elected President. During his tenure, the Bank experienced outstanding growth.
1948 Assets grew to over $16.5 million. The first branch office of the Bank was established. The office at the corner of Jefferson and Loyal Streets, known as “Five Forks,” was opened and offered the first drive-in service for our customers, which was also the first in the Commonwealth.
1949 Stuart L. Brown was elected President.
Early 1950’s American National was the first in Danville to install PBX Dial telephones.
August 1956 New residential developments and the establishment of outlying retail businesses in Danville made the Bank aware of the needs of its customers and the desire for banking convenience in the community. The Riverside Drive Office first opened.
1961 The Nor-Dan Office first opened and the Bank’s assets exceeded $25 million.
1962 William H. Jefferson was elected President.
1966 In an effort to reach customers on the southside of Danville, the South Main Office was built.
1971 New banking hours were established to provide full services from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
1972 The West Main Office opened to accommodate customers on the “west end” of Danville.
October 1, 1973 The home office at 628 Main Street opened. In the early ‘70s, the city embarked on an ambitious “Downtown Revitalization” project. American National’s leadership during this period was significant.
1980 Assets reached almost $88 million. James A. Motley was elected President. The new Nor-Dan Office was completed and opened for business.
1984 Three Automated Teller Machines were installed to provide 24-hour service seven days a week to customers. American National Bankshares Inc. was organized for the purpose of acquiring all of the outstanding shares of American National Bank and Trust Company. Under an agreement and plan of merger, the Bank was acquired by the Corporation on September 1, 1984.
1990 The Bank opened the South Boston Road Office, which is now known as the Airport Office.
1993 Charles H. Majors became President of American National. The banking philosophy of “Relationship Banking” was solidified.
1995 The Bank opened its first Pittsylvania County office through the purchase of the Crestar office in Gretna, Virginia.
1996 American National completed the merger of Mutual Savings Bank, F.S.B., into the Bank. With the acquisition and merger, the Bank increased assets from $249 million to $392 million. It also added two office locations in Danville and one in Collinsville. The Bank also acquired the Yanceyville, North Carolina, branch and ATM faciiity of FirstSouth Bank of Burlington, North Carolina. Assets grew to $429 million.
1999 The Chatham Office and ATM were opened, as well as the Martinsville Office. Our 24-hour phone banking network was introduced. The installation of our platform automation system bank-wide was completed.
2000 The Bank opened the South Boston Office.
2001 American National added Online Banking and check imaging to our banking services.
2002 The Ridgeway Office was opened.
2005 The Bank expanded into the Lynchburg region. AMNB was added to the Russell 2000 Index. A regional organizational structure was implemented to ensure we remain a community bank in all regions we serve.
2006 The acquisition of Community First Bank closed and four new offices were added in the Lynchburg region.
2006 The Bank opened an office on the Bedford County side of Smith Mountain Lake.
2008 The Bank changed the clock logo to our current logo, which emphasizes our commitment to being “your relationship bank.” The Bedford Office was opened. The Piedmont Drive Office in Danville was opened.
2009 A new state-of-the-art banking office opened in Martinsville on Liberty Street.
2010 Jeffrey V. Haley was named President of American National. Charles H. Majors was named Chairman & Chief Executive Officer. A new state-of-the-art office was built and opened in South Boston.
2011 The Bank expanded into North Carolina with the acquisition of MidCarolina Bank, adding eight offices in Burlington, Graham, Mebane and Greensboro.
2012 Charles H. Majors became Chairman and continues as Chief Executive Officer of American National Bankshares Inc (holding company). He remains Chairman of American National Bank and Trust Company. Jeffrey V. Haley became Chief Executive Officer of the Bank, continues as President of the Bank, and became President of the holding company. He was also named to the Board of Directors for the holding company, and he continues as a member of the Bank’s Board of Directors.